You might not have known much about multiple sclerosis (MS) before your diagnosis but the good news is that it’s not hard to learn about the disease. Multiple sclerosis is a lifelong inflammatory illness that affects the brain and spinal cord. The symptoms can vary for each person but include numbness, balance issues, and fatigue. Once you’ve been diagnosed, though, you’ll be working with your doctor to determine the type of MS you have and how to treat it effectively. As you undergo treatment to live well with the disease, these are some of the changes you should expect.
1. It Can Take Time To Determine Your Type Of MS
Diagnosing multiple sclerosis can call for a battery of tests. Typically, you’ll go through an MRI, blood tests, a neurological examination, and a lumbar puncture. That’s just the beginning, though.
Your doctor will need to do more MRI scans and assess your symptoms to determine which of the three types of MS you’re dealing with. The options are relapsing-remitting MS, primary progressive MS, or secondary progressive MS.
RELATED: Do You Know The Different Types of Multiple Sclerosis?
2. You Might Need A Team Of Doctors
While multiple sclerosis is a neurological condition, that doesn’t mean you’ll only deal with a neurologist. It’s likely that you’ll need a physical therapist to help with your balance issues, a nutritionist, and a therapist.
You may also need other specialists such as speech pathologists, nurses, and a urologist.
Multiple Sclerosis: 6 Questions You Should Ask Your Doctor
3. Your Symptoms Aren’t Set In Stone
Unlike other illnesses, MS symptoms will change over time because it’s generally a progressive disease. Additionally, people who are initially diagnosed with relapsing-remitting MS can progress into the progressive form. It’s best to ask your doctor what to expect with your disease and how you’ll know if things are changing.
RELATED: What to Expect From an MS Relapse?
4. You’ll Need To Know The Signs Of A Relapse
Not all types of MS have relapses but if that’s the type you have then it helps to know what you should look out for. Some of the symptoms you may experience during a relapse are blurred vision, pain, trouble walking, and impaired balance. Mild symptoms can be handled with at-home remedies but make sure to ask your doctor what you should do in case of severe relapse.
5. You’ll Need To Track Your Symptoms
Since your symptoms can progress or change over time, it’s a great idea to keep track of what you’re experiencing. That makes it easier for